This post saddens me….Go read it. I’ll wait.
It saddens me. A lot. Kinda angers me too.
Not because anything she says is wrong, nor incorrect. In fact, she’s right. Some of “America” is racist. She, for instance, is racist. She sees color. Color matters to her. Color is important. Me?: Color matters not a whit. Interests and culture matter to me. Race doesn’t. But to her, it does. And to many, of all races, it does.
But it only faces one side of the issue. And I think she is suffering from “White guilt” for some unknown reason
Yes, many white people have a very few black friends. I have that “issue”. I am not ashamed of it. I live in an area where there are few black people. Few black people share my interests….Of those who do, I welcome them. Not my fault that few enough people like to shoot and hunt. Not my fault that not too many black people (or Hispanics) live in my area (some do, but not many…Oddly there are not a lot of black people who seem to want to live in very rural areas in NW Indiana. )
But how many black people have good friends who are white? Not just acquaintances from work, but real friends? How many have invited them over for dinner or a cookout or something like that? I have done so with a fair amount of people from other cultures and while some come out to my home, few black people are comfortable driving into the country. Not my fault that they choose not be integrated either.
Why does the author blame herself for her self perceived failure to fully integrate her social life? I don’t feel that I am a failure for not having 12.6% of my social circle be black (like I care what color any of my friends are, really…..It takes a certain kind of asshole to be part of my social circle, and color is NOT one of the qualifications, trust me….) How many people are calling her to come and be a part of their “black” social circle? Really? Is the lack at one end not just as bad as the lack at the other? Shouldn’t all black people have a high percentage of white friends too? Like, say 6:1 ratio (white to black)? Should we each have 72% White 12.6% Black (African American) 4.8% Asian and 10.2% (OTHER) friends? Is there some special percentage that makes me not a racist? Or really, is the fact that I care not a whit about race? There is that whole “content of character” rather than the “color of the skin” thing, for me, anyway…..Shouldn’t we base our friendship on real, important factors other than race?
I find this sort of self- flagellation to be irritating. People separate themselves into circles based on common interests, on common goals and on common needs. If I am to be friends with you, then we have to have some common ground, and be able to talk and discuss things and have common needs and wants and interests. If you and I have nothing in common because you are a person who lives on welfare and watches “Survivor” and thinks that any story from CNN is the truth (or, for that matter, Fox News) and you live in the city and I live in the country (both of us by choice) and you think that guns are bad, or that the DNC is the savior of the human race, or that Unions are the saving grace of the country or that the country will only be saved when your brand of religion becomes dominant, then what do we have in common? Do ya really think that we are gonna be friends no matter what color we are?
I have a fair number of people, both black, white and hispanic that I am friendly with, that I greatly respect, and who, if they call, I will turn out to help in any way they ask. Color matters little to me, nor to them except as a descriptor of physical characterisics.. We respect and admire each other, and if our interests intersect then we are glad of that. They know that if a pipe breaks in the middle of the night they can call me for help, and that if I break down and need a ride at midnite I may well call them if I am near where they live. We shoot together, or do other things together, and that is enough. We aren’t great social animals, we don’t get together for coffee on weekdays after 5 or do lunch or anything like that (except for the bowling that I do on Friday nights, where color doesn’t matter anymore than gender, as long as you have a good time bowling)
Are these people my friends? By my definition, yes. Are we terribly social? No. (Facebook isn’t a measure here, ’cause few of us use it). But if they call me I’ll be there. And I can call them and have them show up when I need them. And for me, that is the important thing.
Facebook be damned.